July 15, 2017. Today we observe that it's been four years since Abigail went Home. Happy Heavenly Birthday, Abigail! Four years. Next month will bring the day that marks that she will have been gone longer from us than she was with us! That is hard to comprehend in my mind.
I also can't believe it's been so long since I've posted here on this blog. Writing has been so therapeutic for me, and I would feel an urge to write as part of my healing. And then I guess one day I just didn't think of writing. Nor the next, nor the next. And I basically didn't think of the blog anymore for a long time!
Last night I told Aaron that, as of right then, I didn't have any feelings of sadness for today. And so far, that continues. This morning I read John chapter 11 and 12 where Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead. What an incredibly, miraculous story!! I love when Jesus tells Martha that HE is the resurrection and the life. But she didn't quite understand Him, because shortly thereafter she cautions Him that Lazarus will stink if they remove the stone from his grave.
Sometimes we don't get it. I pondered this morning that there are many events in life that we don't understand until enough time has expired where it gives us a broader perspective on the event's purpose. And even then, we likely don't understand it fully. My mind recalled Abigail as a baby, and the fact that she was so clingy to me. She was so very, very attached to me, from birth on. As a four-DAY old, she refused to let Aaron comfort her, and that pattern continued. I was the only one, for many, many months, who could calm her. That was tiring and frustrating at the time! I was exhausted.
|June 27, 2009 - 15 days old|
But I look back now and marvel. I truly believe that her spirit knew she wouldn't be here in mortality long. I don't know the doctrine of how much we know of our own individual mortal experiences prior to our mortal birth, but I truly believe Abigail knew something of her short stay and possibly of her disease, and she expressed that by demanding that I spend a lot of time with her. From her first week of life onward! I rocked her to sleep for every nap she took, and as a 6-month old, I questioned to myself if it was time to teach her to nap on her own. The answer was no. That repeated several months later. Rocking a toddler to bed for each nap is a major commitment, and I did NOT do that with my other children. But I felt prompted to do so with Abigail. And how grateful I am now, knowing I held her and loved on her without knowing what it would mean to my heart later.
Knowing that our perspective is finitely limited, but trusting in God that He will guide us through paths we couldn't imagine and will ultimately be blessings to our lives, brings an incredible sense of peace during our sufferings and sorrows and afterwards as well.
Today I am at peace. Today I am full of internal joy and contentment. I know that Abigail is exactly where she's supposed to be. I know that Father is using her talents and capabilities there as much as He would have here. I have been specifically blessed to know of one missionary experience she's had, and it thrills me. Yes, I miss her. And if I try to type more than that, I cry. But crying is fine, too. :)
I testify that Christ binds up broken hearts. He IS the Resurrection and the Life. "His way is the path that leads to happiness in this life and eternal life in the world to come."(1) He tells us that we must exercise faith and action---"LET your hearts be comforted."(2) "COME unto me, all ye that are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."(3) I testify that through revelation to our day, we know more about this life and life hereafter. I know Abigail is doing the Lord's will, as Jesus said in what we call The Lord's Prayer: "Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven."(4) God has a Plan, (5..great talk) and Abigail is helping further His kingdom there.
I find comfort and happiness in these words of Elder Neal A. Maxwell:
"On the other side of the veil, there are perhaps seventy billion people. They need the same gospel, and releases occur here to aid the Lord's work there. Each release of a righteous individual from this life is also a call to new labors. Those who have true hope understand this.Therefore, though we miss the departed righteous so much here, hundreds may feel their touch there. One day, those hundreds will thank the bereaved for gracefully forgoing the extended association with choice individuals here, in order that they could help hundreds there. In God's ecology, talent and love are never wasted. The hopeful understand this, too" (Notwithstanding My Weakness, p.55).
So Happy Heavenly Birthday/Mission Call Abigail! We love you forever, and are so grateful you will keep us forever!